And I’ll Be Free

June 11, 2016


Past the Cumberland
riding a dun
dusty and blowing
from a day’s ride west

hooves puffing
plumes billowing
the grass waving
the sun beating

all a day’s ride west
in search of the broad plains
and the hills
in the country far beyond

the frontier
it’s waitin’
for me an’ my horse
all I got here

in my bags and tied
on my saddle
I gave up
on that eastern bank

and my papers and my shirtsleeves
caught a riverboat
headed west
and forgot my past

forgot the cobblestone
paths and frocks
top-hats and bowlers
left afar back

I’m headed west
maybe the Rockies
or the coast and Californios
past the injuns and wheat

I’ll brave the desert
the empty sands and spines
I heard they’re fine
a place to steal the breath

but anywhere but there
back where the rain
and the train
leave me strained

in my eye
in my heart
give me frontier horizons
and the soul of the land

an’ I’ll be free
just my horse an’ me
and a ride through the hills
west, trails, far and away.


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